You offered free WiFi to your guests because you understood the benefits that came with it. However, you have probably experienced at least one frustration regarding the operational side of offering guest WiFi. Data throttling, passwords, security, and WiFi squatters are all common issues for businesses offering WiFi. If you believe that these issues will always be a constant struggle with guest WiFi, think again. Below are the smart solutions to take back control of your guest WiFi.
Limit Guest WiFi Usage
When it comes to your WiFi’s speed, customers will always want the fastest speed possible. Yes, It’s important to offer a WiFi service to your guests with upload and download speeds that are actually usable, however, that super speedy WiFi is more (and cost more) than what you actually need.
If your WiFi speed needs an adjustment, simply adjust your router settings. To access your router settings, open up a search engine and type your IP address into the address bar. You should be redirected to a login page for your router. Usually, there are default login credentials associated with your router if specific credentials were not created during setup. Once logged in, you should be able to access a page that allows you to adjust the upload and download speeds with a few simple clicks.
Are your customers camping out after hours? A local coffee shop might have trouble with customers sticking around until closing (and after!) to use the WiFi. Traditionally, this scenario requires staff to ask their customers to leave in order to complete closing tasks. A smart alternative is a WiFi system that allows you to set online and offline hours. Your guest WiFi will turn on and off automatically, based on the hours that you choose.
Traditional logic dictated that the only way to secure a guest WiFi network was to password protect it. But times have changed, and if you are handing over your network’s password to every customer looking for WiFi, you’re still putting your entire network at risk. You probably believe that the best solution to a securing a guest WiFi network is to make it password protected – wrong. To truly provide a safe and secure environment for your WiFi guests, it is best to provide a WiFi service that utilizes a captive portal system. A proper captive portal system prohibits WiFi users from locating and accessing other devices that are on the same network. This tool is amazing for your WiFi because it allows guests to easily access your network while still helping to keep everyone safe and secure.
Another step to provide a smoother and more secure experience for your customers is to have a separate access point for your guest WiFi. If you are running your back-house operations and your guest WiFi off the same router, you are doing WiFi wrong. Having a different access point for your WiFi guests is great since it provides them a part of your network that is solely for them. Contact your ISP to find out how to add another access point to your WiFi network.
Evict WiFi Squatters
While some businesses offer guest WiFi as a way to help draw in more customers, others may consider it an added bonus to those who initially shop at an establishment. Some customers might decide to draft a thesis over one single cup of coffee – meaning less potential revenue and table space for paying guests. Behold, the WiFi squatter.
You’ve probably dealt with WiFi squatters at one time or another. To best deal with squatters, designate an automated timeout on your guest WiFi. Automated timeouts work by disconnecting WiFi devices after a set amount of time. Automated timeouts is a great WiFi tool for any business that requires steady turnaround times like restaurants since you can encourage guests to limit their WiFi use.
Unfortunately, some people don’t take the hint. Is your nail salon or auto garage near an apartment building? Perhaps you notice the same device connecting and eating up tons of bandwidth every evening. A WiFi captive portal system allows you to block specific users that are considered repeat offenders. This allows your business to take back control of your guest WiFi.
Brand the Guest Experience
A captive portal offers more than just an extra layer of security for your business network. Leveraged correctly, it’s a microsite of its own. Use your new captive portal to communicate your brand’s voice with images and promotional information. You can even ask your customers to sign up for your newsletter or like your Facebook page as they log in. Don’t let this prime moment for engagement pass you by.
GoZone’s Smart WiFi is more than a tool to market your business. With GoZone’s Marketing4WiFi platform, you can take back control of your guest WiFi. Adjust upload and download speeds, eliminate WiFi passwords, create automated timeouts and flag unwanted guests all from one easy-to-use dashboard. GoZone WiFi’s platform even helps with security through a captive portal system that helps keep your WiFi guests safe while providing an easy login system. Contact us today to learn how we can help your WiFi operate at the simplest level to date.